I just noticed quite alot recently that alot of people have been asking for help and tips on overclocking the 2500k, 2600k and 2700k. I just wanted to give brief example of how I managed to overclock my cpu, and hopefully these settings/tips/info might be useful to others looking to overclock their cpus for the first time, or for those who are struggling for a stable overclock and for whom these settings might help you with that
What you'll need for overclocking the 2500k/2600k/2700k are...
CPU-Z - http://www.cpuid.com/softwares/cpu-z.html
Realtemp - http://majorgeeks.com/Real_Temp_d6098.html
Prime95 - http://majorgeeks.com/Prime95_d4363.html
Piece of paper and a pen! Definitely a good idea to write down all your settings on a piece of paper or save them on a notepad document, it saves a hell of a lot of time when it comes to pinpointing your instability!Please note - The 1344 & 1792 p95 FFT tests you are asked to use below while they are good for testing stability, they are not 100% consistent, which means that while you might be able to pass both tests one day, you might also fail the exact same tests a different day. Do not fret if you cant consistently pass these tests, just try them and see how it goes. If everything seems well, then you might aswell go for a full overnight test.
Please ensure you have the appropriate hardware in your pc before following this guide, i.e dont use a cheap stock intel cpu cooler or a cheap power supply/motherboard etc etc. This guide pushes your cpu hard and you need good quality parts in your system before overclocking the cpu! Overclocking is your responsibility, I accept no liability for any hardware damaged through the use of this overclocking guide.
No two CPUs are the same, just because CPU A can do 5ghz at 1,4v doesnt mean CPU B will do the same. Please bear this in mind when overclocking your cpu. Any changes made to your system after passing 12 hour prime95 test may mean it is no longer stable, in which case you may need to rerun the 12 hour prime 95 test.
OK here we go!The basic concept behind overclocking the 2500k/2600k/2700k (Click to show)
The first list of settings are:
To be set before starting overclock
On ASUS P8P67 Pro Motherboard (hopefully the names for voltage settings etc wont be too different across motherboards.)
AI Overclock Tuner - Manual
BCLK/PEG frequency - 100 (Never Change this)
Turbo Ratio - By All Cores
EPU Power Saving Mode - Disable
VRM Frequency - Manual and 350
CPU Current Capability - 140%
CPU PLL Overvoltage - Disabled
Load-Line Calibration - Ultra High
Phase Control/Duty Control - Extreme
NOTICE: Please use Manual
CPU Vcore whilst stress testing until you have found your stable amount, this helps to keep the voltage stable and rules that out as a possible cause of instability if you are having problems. After testing and when you have found your stable vcore, switch to Offset
voltage for reduced power use.Make sure you set cpu vcore to manual and enter the correct amount of vcore, do NOT use 'Auto' voltage as this makes the motherboard overcompensate the amount of vcore necessary for the overclock and use's voltages like its going out of fashion (mine decided 1.504v was a good idea )
Now for the Voltages
CPU Voltage - Set to 1.20v which is stock CPU voltage for now
DRAM Voltage - 1.65v/1.50v etc as per your RAM stick label
VCCSA - Auto
VCCIO - Auto (You only need to manually set this if overclocking your memory; in which case dont go over 1.15v)
CPU PLL Voltage - Auto
PCH Voltage - Auto
CPU Spread Spectrum - Enabled
CPU Ratio - Auto
Intel Adaptive Thermal Monitor - Enabled
Active Processor Cores - All
Limit CPUID Maximum - Disabled
Execute Disable Bit - Enabled
Intel Virtualization Technology - AFAIK This is only necessary for [email protected]
on a 2500k
Enhanced Intel Speedstep Technology - Enabled
Turbo Mode - Enabled
CPU C1E - Enabled/Auto
CPU C3 Report - Auto
CPU C6 Report - Auto
Set your Memory/Ram using either the settings advised by your memory manufacturer, or by using 'XMP' profile, XMP should set your ram automatically as to how its supposed to run
Overclocking to 4.0Ghz
Now for the voltage settings there's only a couple that should need to be changed, most of them can be left at Auto, or manually set by you at their stock voltages if you wish to do so, it wont make much difference IMO.
So with these settings made, the first step is to increase the CPU Multiplier. Now with regards to overclocking the RAM, You should leave your ram at stock settings OR underclock it for the duration of your cpu overclock. Personally I just set my ram as at stock and overclocked the cpu. Basically I wouldn't want to have my ram set below stock settings then try to boot it up with a big 5ghz overclock and find its all unstable due to the ram not being capable of working at normal speeds.
OK so now your set, go ahead and increase the multiplier. Once your into Windows open up Prime95, CPU-z and realtemp. CPU-z shows what vcore and cpu multiplier your at, realtemp shows your temps good to keep an eye on these and make sure it doesn't go over 75-80C. Lastly use p95 for testing if your overclock is stable.
Once you have P95 open, use these settings:
Go to Options>Torture Test, Select: Custom, 1344 FFT - 1344FT, Available ram use all your ram but leave 1.5GB (1GB for windows and 500mb spare), and set cycles to 1 minutes. So it should look like this:
So I have 4GB ram total, im using 2.5GB for this test If you have 8GB, use 6.5GB etc. If you can pass 15-20 mins of this test, restart the torture test and use 1792 - 1792
for the FFT size. Again do this for 15-20 mins. If you can do both these tests, you have a good indication of the cpu being stable, and you can either go ahead and do an overnight p95 blend test if you want full stability, or increase the CPU multiplier. Now there will be a point where you are no longer stable, for me I was able to get to 4.0ghz on stock volts with my 2500k, not bad at all considering i bought it at stock speed of 3.3ghz
Whilst overclocking, dont forget to write down all your settings on a piece of paper or save them on a notepad document, it saves a hell
of a lot of time when it comes to pinpointing your instability!
Hope so far this has been of use!
Overclocking 4.0ghz - 4.5Ghz
OK so by now you'll will have worked out your max overclock on stock volts by increasing only the CPU multiplier. Once you have found the max multiplier on stock voltages, All you do from now on is increase the cpu vcore, up the multiplier until you can once again boot into windows and pass both p95 tests. Keep increasing multiplier/vcore up until around the 4.5ghz mark. Obviously if you can keep going and still pass the p95 tests do that, but once you start getting BSOD's or your cpu starts locking up, its time to check below.
Overclocking past 4.5ghz
OK, the hard part! The main problems you will encounter with going past 4.5ghz is either BSOD, usually 101 and 124 codes, or the system wont boot or will hang at windows screen. If your problem is the system hanging or refusing to boot into Windows, try Enabling CPU PLL Overvoltage
If your problem is down to BSOD codes, usually if it is a 101 code try increasing the vcore. If the problem is a 124 code, Firstly you need to double check if you have changed memory settings from stock, increased/decreased PLL voltage or changed any power saving features. If you have changed or overclocked your memory, try putting it back to stock or underclock it whilst you stabilize your cpu. If you have changed the PLL voltage, unfortunately your gonna have to start from either the highest (1.9v) or lowest (1.5/6v) setting and work your way up or down and see if testing becomes stable. This can take a while as you should
go up in single increments at a time. Lastly if you have disabled power saving features, try turning them back on or changing different combinations, i.e have C1e on but C3/C6 off. Try to either raise OR Lower the PLL Voltage (stock setting is 1.8/1.9v and some users have found lowering the PLL Voltage can help with stability and overcoming 0x124 codes). Strangely an overclock can become more stable if the pll voltage is lowered, and usually running under 1.70v proves to be better for some people.
So you will have to play around with the cpu vcore and the pll voltage until your once again stable!
So that's pretty much it! If your wondering whats safe temps/volts to stay under my opinion is stay under 80C and 1.45v after vdroop. But its up to you if you want to run higher or stay under these settings, nobody can really say yet what the max safe levels are. Please see the Q and A section below for more details.
ASUS P8P67 PRO BIOS Template
Here is what my Bios looks like for my stable 4.9ghz 2700k overclock, all settings bar one or two are exactly same as in this guide Click To View (Click to show)
Q: Prime95 crashes during testing, X amount of workers fail during testing, I get Blue Screen Of Death (BSOD) code 0x124/0x101 while testing.
A:X Amount of worker fails
- Increase CPU vcore slightly, this is usually a sign of getting close to stability.Prime95 crashes during testing
- Attempt to increase CPU vcore, if not adjust PLL voltage.BSOD 0x101
- Increase CPU vcore.BSOD 0x124
- I hate
this BSOD with a passion, easily the most difficult problem to overcome when overclocking Sandy Bridge CPU's due to the fact there's no easy answer. Firstly you need to establish if you have changed memory settings, PLL voltage or any power saving features. If you have changed or overclocked your memory, try putting it back to stock or underclock it whilst you stabilize your cpu. If you have changed the PLL voltage, unfortunately your gonna have to start from either the highest (1.9v) or lowest (1.5/6v) setting and work your way up or down and see if testing becomes stable. This can take a while as you should
go up in single increments at a time. Lastly if you have disabled power saving features, try turning them back on or changing different combinations, i.e have C1e on but C3/C6 off.
Just to throw a spanner in the works...a 0x124 code can also be remedied by increasing cpu vcore. Sorry I cannot give a definitive answer here folks, but unfortunately this process can take some time. Stick at it and if you get problems post in this thread and we'll try get it sorted!Q: What is the max safe temperature/CPU voltage I can run?
A: There is no definitive answer for either of these so to speak, Intel does state max cpu voltage of 1.52v,but most people don't run it that high. My recommendation is only run as high a voltage as your cpu cooler can handle. If your running 1.35v and getting 80C at full load, your either in the middle of summer or you need to adjust/recycle your cpu cooler and buy a better one. Either way, you cant go much higher than this. I would say stay under 80C and your cpu should be fine, if you plan on keeping your cpu for a number of years, stay under 70C.Update:
As of August 2012, after 9 months of overclock at 4.9ghz my cpu initially required only 1.41v. It now needs 1.45v to remain stable. So thats an extra 0.04v my cpu needs. Please bear in mind I used to fold 24/7, so I estimate my cpu has been at 100% full load for about 7 months at temperatures between early 70s to just under 80C.Q: Which voltage setting should I use? (offset, manual, auto)
A: NEVER use Auto! Use manual whilst stress testing, then if you wish switch to offset to save power and reduce heat. If your going to be folding with this cpu, you might aswell use manual voltage seen as how its never going to sit at idle.Q: How do I use Offset voltage on my CPU?
A: Offset voltage is very simple. It uses your CPU VID amount and then depending on whether you set +0.XXX or -0.XXX it will either add or subtract this amount to give you your final cpu voltage. For instance my VID is 1.365 and I want my cpu to run at 1.400v, I would set offset to +0.035, giving me total of 1.400. Don't forget you still need to account for vdroop with offset, so depending on your LLC level you might need higher or lower amounts of offset to get your desired voltage. Example, Say my VID is 1.365, I want 1.40v so I set offset +0.035, however I get into windows and under full load im only getting 1.392v. I would then set offset to +0.040v. You may need to experiment with this a couple times in Windows, but remember check voltage when cpu is at full load, as this is the important amount of voltage to provide.
To find out your CPU's VID all you need to do is open up Realtemp v3.67 and click on the box in the top right corner, it will either be displaying 00:00:01 (amount of time its been running), 100W (CPU Power draw) or will say 1.365 VID.Q: How does LLC work and which level/setting should I use?
A: Load Line Calibration adjusts the amount of cpu vdroop in windows, vdroop is the perfectly normal process wherein a certain amount of voltage is 'dropped' from the cpu in windows to protect it from damage caused by voltage spikes. VDROP - Basically in bios you might set cpu vcore to 1.400v, but in windows you might see 1.36v. You have a voltage drop of 0.04v. VDROOP - The difference in voltage in CPUz from load to idle. LLC can help to reduce the amount of vdroop in windows. With LLC the aim of the game is to get the cpu voltage in windows as close as possible to what you set in bios when the cpu is under full load
. You will need to test each LLC level to determine which best helps you get as little voltage drop as possible. Fluctuations are normal when using LLC, and you can expect the voltage to jump by several increments at full load.
Below is a thread on idle/random 124 Blue Screen Of Death info from Munaim1,Please have a look in the thread if your having difficulty working out a 124 BSOD code.
Have fun and good luck with your overclock, and don't forget to post in the Sandy Bridge Stable Club
once you've found your max overclock